Blog Home > Blog > 11 Books for Caregivers: A Thoughtful Reading List for Family Caregivers

Are you a family caregiver? If so, one of the best things you can do for yourself is to build a support network of people who understand what you’re going through. If you don’t have a good group around you, one way to create one is by reading books about caregiving. Below are some suggestions for books that will help you cope with the challenges of being a caregiver. Here’s a list of 11 books about caregiving that may be worth a try.

1) Already Toast by Kate Washington

Already Toast: Caregiving and Burnout in America is a fascinating look at the issue of caregiver burnout. Washington interviewed over 100 caregivers from across the country, and her findings are both eye-opening and alarming. She found that caregivers are often working long hours for little pay, and they are frequently not given the support they need to care for their loved ones effectively. As a result, many caregivers are struggling with anxiety, depression, and even physical health problems. However, there is hope. Washington also interviews caregivers who have found ways to cope with their stressors and build a support network. These caregivers provide an inspiring example of how to care for others without sacrificing one’s own wellbeing. Check out the book here.

2) Choosing Joy by Helene Berger

In her book Choosing Joy, Helene Berger shares her story of finding happiness after adversity. Born with a rare genetic disorder that caused her to develop mental and physical disabilities, Berger was adopted by loving parents who encouraged her to lead a full and happy life. However, as she grew older, Berger began to experience discrimination and exclusion from her peers. Rather than allowing herself to be defined by her limitations, Berger chose to focus on the things that made her happy. She developed a passion for music and dance, and found joy in everyday moments like spending time with her family and friends. Through her experiences, Berger shows that true happiness comes from within. By choosing joy, we can find light even in the darkest of times. Check out the book here.

3) The Unexpected Caregiver by Kari Berit

In The Unexpected Caregiver, Kari Berit chronicles her experiences caring for her husband during his battle with cancer. Drawing on her training as a nurse, she provides readers with practical advice on everything from managing medications to coping with the emotional challenges of caregiving. She also candidly shares her own struggles, from the anger and resentment she felt early on to the moments of hope and humor that kept her going. Ultimately, The Unexpected Caregiver is a moving portrait of one woman’s journey through grief and loss – and a testimony to the strength of the human spirit. Check out the book here.

4) The Art and Science of Caregiving: Stories of Inspiring Elders with an End-of-Life Guidebook by Annelise Schinzinger

The Art and Science of Caregiving is a book about elder care, written by Annelise Schinzinger. The book is divided into two parts: the first part consists of stories about inspiring elders, while the second part is a guidebook for caregivers. In the first part, Schinzinger tells the stories of four elders who have made the most of their later years despite facing challenges such as illness and disability. One theme that emerges from these stories is the importance of maintaining a positive outlook and remaining active and engaged in life. The second part of the book provides practical tips for caregivers, covering topics such as how to deal with difficult behaviors, manage medications, and cope with caregiver stress. The Art and Science of Caregiving is an informative and inspirational book that will be valuable for both caregivers and those who are interested in elder care.

5) The Caregivers Companion by Deborah A. Boyle 

The book is about how to be a caregiver for someone with Alzheimer’s disease. The book gives tips on how to care for someone with Alzheimer’s disease, as well as how to deal with the emotional stress that comes with being a caregiver. The book also includes interviews with caregivers and experts in the field of Alzheimer’s disease. The Caregiver’s Companion is a helpful book for anyone who is caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease.

6) The Fearless Caregiver by Greg Barg

In The Fearless Caregiver, Greg Barg outlines his 8-step approach to caregiving. He begins by urging caregivers to assess their situation and set realistic goals. He then advises them to build a support network of friends and family members who can offer practical help. Next, he encourages caregivers to advocate for their loved ones, ensuring that they receive the best possible care. Additionally, Barg recommends that caregivers take care of themselves, both physically and emotionally. Lastly, he urges caregivers to accept help when it is offered. By following Barg’s advice, caregivers can minimize the stresses of caregiving and maintain a sense of balance in their lives.

7) Box of Butterflies by Roma Downey

Roma Downey’s book Box of Butterflies is a heartwarming collection of stories and essays about finding blessings in everyday life. Downey, best known for her role on the TV show Touched by an Angel, shares personal anecdotes about times when she was able to see the good in challenging situations. She also includes stories from other people who have found blessings in unlikely places. These inspiring stories remind readers that even when things are tough, there are always reasons to be grateful. The book is a quick read, but it will leave a lasting impression on readers who are looking for a little hope and inspiration in their lives.

8) Living with Dying by Katie Ortlip, RN, LCSW, and Jahnna Beecham

Living with Dying is a book about end-of-life care, written by Katie Ortlip, RN, LCSW, and Jahnna Beecham. The book provides an overview of the various issues that need to be considered when caring for a terminally ill patient, from the physical to the emotional. It also offers advice on how to deal with difficult conversations and decision-making, as well as how to manage grief. While the book is aimed at health care professionals, it is also a valuable resource for anyone who is facing the end of life, either their own or a loved one’s.Living with Dying is a compassionate and practical guide that can help readers navigate the often-challenging process of end-of-life care.

9) An invitation to laugh and cry—at the same time by Roz Chast

​​In her book, Roz Chast invites readers to take a walk down memory lane with her as she revisits some of her most memorable (and embarrassing) childhood moments. From awkward family vacations to painful school experiences, Chast shares her stories with humor and compassion, inviting readers to laugh and cry along with her. In reliving these moments, Chast also provides readers with a glimpse into her own creative process, offering a behind-the-scenes look at how she turns her life into art. Ultimately, An invitation to laugh and cry—at the same time is a heartwarming and hilarious book that will resonate with anyone who has ever felt like an outsider.

10) Cocoon of Love for Cancer Caregivers By Susan Brownell

In her book Cocoon of Love for Cancer Caregivers, author Susan Brownell provides caregivers with advice and support for managing their own stress while caring for a loved one with cancer. Brownell herself is a cancer caregiver, and she draws on her own experiences to offer readers practical tips for coping with the demands of caregiving. She covers topics such as communicating with medical professionals, dealing with insurance companies, managing finances, and finding time for self-care. In addition, she includes a section on caregiver burnout, offering advice on how to recognize the signs and avoid becoming overwhelmed. With its down-to-earth approach, Cocoon of Love for Cancer Caregivers is an indispensable resource for anyone in the role of cancer caregiver.

11) Cancer Kills the Caregiver, Too by Kimberly Bratton

In her book Cancer Kills the Caregiver, Too, Kimberly Bratton provides an honest and intimate account of what it’s like to care for a loved one with cancer. Bratton chronicles her own experiences as a caregiver for her husband, who was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer, as well as the challenges faced by other caregivers she met along the way. While caring for a sick loved one is often seen as a selfless act, Bratton highlights the physical and emotional toll it can take on caregivers. She also offers advice for how to deal with the unique challenges that come with being a caregiver, from managing your own stress to communicating with your loved one’s medical team. Cancer Kills the Caregiver, Too is an essential read for anyone who is currently caring for a sick loved one or who may find themselves in that position in the future.

Closing Thoughts

Becoming a family caregiver is not an easy path, and having a repertoire of books to turn to when you need comfort, escapism, or a shoulder can help you through the tougher moments. If you don’t have anyone in your life that understands, we recommend finding a support group in your area, or joining our California caregivers Facebook group in addition to these reads. Having someone who can relate to the complicated emotions and struggles you experience on a daily basis can make all of the difference.

If you’re providing care to a loved one, we invite you to check out our free resources. To get more information about the resources we have available to you as a California caregiver, contact us at the California Caregiver Resource Center nearest to you or join CareNav for free today.

Join our Facebook Group

If you’re looking for a community of caregivers that truly understands what you’re going through. A group you can turn to when you have questions, frustrations, or need advice? Join our California Family Caregivers Facebook group today.

Our California Family Caregivers Facebook group is a safe space for caregivers across different communities in California to speak about their caregiving journey and interact with one another. Join us today.

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